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Inner sanctum – A calm and elegant master suite by SPG Architects

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A calm and elegant master suite by SPG Architects

Inner sanctum – A calm and elegant master suite by SPG Architects Discover this article's resources 0


Updating an historic property for a contemporary lifestyle can be rife with challenges, not least because you're trying to reconcile two disparate programmes.

"Built in 1901, this two-storey carriage house forms part of a much larger home that recently underwent a complete renovation," says Coty Sidnam, principal of SPG Architects.

"For the master suite, the owner wanted to create a sleek, seamless look using a pared-back palette of materials and colours, while incorporating a number of modern amenities – television, audio visual system, fireplace and air conditioning."

Natural wood – ipê and walnut – features throughout and a complementary palette of browns and ochres creates a warm ambience.

"The scale of the room, with its very high ceilings, created large wall planes. In order to break that up and to inject a human scale into the room, we created two inset feature elements using Burma teak marble," says Sidnam.


"As this part of the building has a heritage designation, we couldn't make any changes to the original windows. To give the illusion of extra height we added a fixed walnut panel above, which then brought the windows into line with the rest of the vertical elements."

The use of wood as a base material continues in the walk-through wardrobe, while the ensuite bathroom inverts this, so that it becomes an accent to the back-painted glass and Venetian plaster.

Because the owner has a fondness for Moroccan design, hand-carved pocket doors were crafted to separate the bedroom from the wardrobe and the wardrobe from the bathroom.

"It is more than a private space, it is a personalised space, an evocation of the client's personality made manifest," says Sidnam.

First published date: 11 October 2012

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Credit List

Architect Coty Sidnam (principal), Sandra Aranguren-Langston (project manager), SPG Architects (New York, NY)
Interior designer Eric Gartner (principal), Mathieu de Genot (project manager), SPG Architects
Tub Consonance by Kohler
Vanity Custom Corian one-piece vanity top and basin in Glacier White and stained ipê
Taps Axor Starck in chrome by Hansgrohe
Shower enclosure Frameless frosted glass from RB Wyatt
Shower fittings Hansgrohe
Flooring White frosted back-painted glass from Manhattan Shade & Glass Company (bathroom); stained ipê (bedroom and wardrobe)
Wall coverings White Grosso Terra Venetian plaster; white frosted back-painted glass
Accessories Xeno by Samuel Heath